I will honestly admit that I have a hard time focusing, and seem to be more productive when my day is busy and chaotic; I am not the type of personal who can naturally sit and perform one solitary task for a prolonged period of time. I often find myself getting lost in mundane and insignificant tasks, which distract me from the more important things. If I could, I would probably try to simultaneously do several activities (like cooking, working out, business meetings, and proposal prep) at once, while also scanning Twitter for conversation and interesting tid-bits. I used to be the person who checked their email during a workout, just because I wanted to maximize my time. I can imagine it probably drove Brett insane sometimes. (He probably wanted to swat me upside the head with a foam roller a few times!)
There’s always something going on and I live life at a fast pace, but over the past few months, I’ve been applying several practices that allow me to focus better. Multitasking actually prevents a person from putting their full attention and dedication to a task; let’s forego multitasking and practice qualified focus. When we focus on the task at hand, we ease our stress levels and begin to really live in the moment.
Here’s my top 3 tips to find more focus during the day:
- Timed Activities:Schedule realistic times for each activity on your calendar. Follow through by sticking within the provided time limit for that activity Most digital calendars will allow you to schedule bookings either every 5 -10 minutes, so find out how much time you need for each chore, and schedule it in. If you turn your phones on silent, turn off Facebook, and give yourself time to do your task – you can avoid getting lost in each task and limiting the amount of time each one takes.
- Turn It All Off: Close the windows on your computer and turn off your phones; don’t let things interfere with your concentration. When you learn to dismiss these distractions, you can organize your projects better and complete them the way you planned. The most important point is to complete each task, so you don’t lose focus for the next task at hand.
- Take Small Breaks: Between each project, task or appointment – try and take a small pause. It’s an opportunity to compose yourself and avoid feeling anxious or panicked. Schedule realistic times for your appointments, and remember to leave a 5 minute buffer between any back to back errands.
Try these tips out and tell me what you think!